January 20, 2018

New Report From Ithaka S+R: “Supporting the Changing Research Practices of Public Health Scholars”

From the Report’s Web Site:

Ithaka S+R’s Research Support Services Program investigates how the research support needs of scholars vary by discipline. In 2016-2017 Ithaka S+R examined the changing research methods and practices of public health scholars conducting research through U.S. institutions. This project was undertaken collaboratively with research teams at seven academic libraries with the goal of identifying services to better support public health scholars.

2017-12-14_10-23-31This report aims to provide actionable findings for the organizations, institutions, and professionals who support the research process of public health studies. Ninety-three scholars were interviewed during the project, and Ithaka S+R sampled 30 of the resulting transcripts towards the analysis for this report. These transcripts yielded findings in the following thematic areas in which public health would benefit from improved or new services: working with others; information discovery and access; working with data; and outputs, audience, and impact. Within these sections, we identified the following key challenges:

  • Workflows in Collaborative Settings. Public health scholars’ work often features cross-institutional and international collaborations. They need workflow tools and infrastructures that can better facilitate their collaborative work.
  • Information Discovery and Access. While discoverability of and access to information has generally improved for Public health scholars, they continue to experience barriers to discovering grey literature and accessing peer-reviewed articles written by scholars outside of the U.S.
  • Working with Data. Public health scholars experience different challenges based on whether their research incorporates quantitative and/or qualitative data; however, they generally experience difficulties in leveraging new technologies for data storage, management and preservation, and balancing privacy requirements with increasing expectations to share data.
  • Outputs, Audiences and Impacts. Public health scholars find the publishing landscape complicated and difficult to navigate, particularly pertaining to impacts and open access. They also seek support in articulating the value of their publishing beyond peer-reviewed journals and showcasing their work dynamically online.

Direct to Full Text Report ||| PDF Version (37 pages)

Gary Price About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.

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